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Many Canadians and residents of the Province of Ontario do not realize that Ontario, along with other Provinces/Territories and U.S. States have Reciprocal Agreements that allow the sharing and possession of driver’s licence and driver records (within their respective Provinces, Territories or U.S. States) to be exchanged.
In 1960, the United States of America created and developed the “Driver Licence Compact”. The idea behind the creation of this compact, was for individual States to share and exchange information with respect to traffic violations and driver licence suspensions of driver’s licensed in other States, to that driver’s home State. The objective behind this was to have one driver’s licence and one driver’s record. The home State, upon receiving information from another State, with regard to a driver’s traffic violation conviction or a conviction which led to the suspension of the driver’s licence, would apply the motor vehicle laws of the home State, towards that infraction, depending on the driving laws of that particular home State. The home State, upon receiving the information of a conviction in another State, could impose a wide range of penalties, from demerit points, to a fine or even a suspension, depending on the severity of the offence.
Soon the U.S. came up with the Non-Resident Violator Compact, which was replaced with the Driver Licence Agreement. Now the U.S. has the Interstate Driver Licence Compact, which 45 States participate in.
Canada and Ontario, about thirty years later, began to have their own Reciprocal Agreements. In 1989, Ontario and Quebec entered into a special agreement, to share information about driver’s who were licenced in Ontario and were convicted of traffic violations in Quebec and visa versa.
In 1990, the Canadian Driver Licence Compact was developed and had most Provinces and a Territory agreeing to share information. As a result of a change in Article 5 of the compact in 2003, those who participated in the compact, were now obligated to send unpaid fine information to the home Province or Territory of a that particular licenced driver, if a non-resident received a ticket in their jurisdiction (in another Province or Territory) and neglected to pay the fine. The overall objective behind these agreements which spanned the entire country, was to develop one driver licence, one driver’s record. Over time, there will be one North American Driver’s Licence, which will envelop anyone who wants to be licenced to drive in Canada or the U.S.A.
In addition to this agreement, Ontario signed off special agreements with the State of New York and the State of Michigan. Some of these come into being in May, 2009. These agreements fall under section 198 (1) of the Highway Traffic Act.
In addition to these agreements, there are others between Ontario and the following 41 U.S. States:
Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Idaho, Illonois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvannia, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virgina, Wisconsin, Wyoming and District of Columbia.